Object photography

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Object description

  • Maori artist
  • Epa (house panel), 19th century
  • Wood, paint
  • New Zealand (Aotearoa)
  • H: 47 1/2 in, W: 10 3/4 in, D: 2 1/2 in (H: 120.6 cm, W: 27.3 cm, D: 6.3 cm)
  • Gift of Mrs. Harry H. Walker, in memory of Mr. Harry H. Walker, 1956
  • E33528


This is a carved architectural panel from Maori meeting house, probably from inside. The architectural term for this piece is "epa." Carved, stylized male and female figures in relief. Carved openwork. Maori meeting and storage houses, comprised of ornately carved wood panels and architectural elements, are centers of tribal life and symbols of its structure. In keeping with Maori convention, this panel's two ancestral figures feature outstretched tongues, tattoos, and three-fingered hands.